Cook.Plate.Dine. | #102 — Mastering Technique

Cook.Plate.Dine. | #102 — Mastering Technique


(bright instrumental music) – [Woman] This is a
fast-paced career. – [Narrator] In the
heart of Milwaukee, students observe and
practice the techniques to transform themselves… – I did it! – [Narrator] Into
professional chefs. – The cooking part of
it isn’t the challenge. It’s being ready
to be in school. – It’s stressful. Can you learn? Can you adjust as
you’re going along? That’s what you have to do. – [Narrator] Learning
the art of cooking. – [Man] It’s amazing
that they get through it. I’m always impressed. – [Narrator] From food
preparation to presentation. – You don’t learn to
cook reading a book. You have to do it, and here
we’ll put you in the kitchen. We give you the experience,
the opportunity, the ability to learn. – [Narrator] For some
students in MATC’s Culinary Arts program,
becoming a professional chef was not their first career path. – Julia Child inspired me. I read her autobiography,
and she was a woman who at 36 decided to
go to Le Cordon Bleu and learn how to cook. And I thought, “Well, geez,
I’m in a career I don’t love, “and I’m in my mid-30s. “Why can’t I do it too? “She did it.” We get to actually be pretty
creative in what we’re doing, and we’re learning a lot too. – Since the military,
I forced myself into the culinary world, like
the artistic side of cooking. And I love every second of it. It’s definitely
one of my passions. – Very good, even
without the nutmeg. – Thank you. – So I went into
beauty business, and
I had my own salon. I was doing hair
replacement, hair extensions, but after so many
years, I realized that, “No, I really want to cook.” And my goal is to open
my own restaurant. – [Narrator] The students
learn quickly in the program that honing their technical
skills in the kitchen will also enhance
their creativity. – Somebody can’t teach
me to be creative. I either am or I’m not. I need somebody to teach me
how to be technically correct. – See, Carrie’s fish right
here is a little bit tore up. Pin boning them with the
pliers will look better. – Going to MATC really
jump started my career. And knowing the basics
and really the kind of fundamentals of cooking,
you don’t get to learn in a restaurant. And not every sort of restaurant practices those fundamentals
so knowing that, I think, also has really allowed my creativity
to blossom. – [Narrator] Culinary school
begins with kitchen basics: knife cuts and cooking
the perfect egg dish. Then, students progress to
other cooking techniques. – So this is where
we’re really learning to refine our
skills in all of the different classic
methods of cooking. – Yeah, turn it away from you. It’s easier that way. – The first semester
went by really fast. It was just all the basics. This one has just been
jampacked with everything. You know, seven in the
morning until four in the afternoon, but it’s
so much information. – And you feel it. If it’s cool in the
middle, you’re going to say that’s probably
rare to medium rare. – One thing that I find
that most people desire or most people like
to have is soups. – When you think about
it, the first recipe in Julia Child’s cookbook
and the first recipe in Joy of Cooking is a soup. Your soups, your
stocks, and your sauces are the underlying foundation. Because it is so simple,
because it is a simple thing, you can’t hide behind anything. Soup has to be good. – We really teach them
fundamentals about where stocks and soups
and where the origins are. I would like to see you
utilizing this technique. – [Narrator] Brian
Moran has over 35 years of industry and
teaching experience. Along with Chef Robert Barton, they share the importance of
creating flavorful stocks, the basis of many dishes, especially soups and sauces. – This is for the fish stock. We’re making fish
stock right now. Remember the more
bones you break up, the more it will extract flavor. – [Narrator] Stocks get
their intense flavor by simmering poultry,
beef, or fish bones or a melange of vegetables. – You gotta take all the
bones out of the stock. – [Student] Oh, missed one. – [Narrator] Once students
have mastered cooking stocks, they move on to preparing soups. – On the chicken noodle
soup, we’re looking for a good ratio of noodles,
vegetables, to broth. Did you try it? – [Student] Yeah. – And? – It’s good. I burned my tongue on it. – What did you add? – Salt and pepper. – [Chef] You did?
– Yeah. – [Chef] Today?
– Yep. – [Chef] You sure? – Oh, my goodness. – No, I just want to make
sure that you did actually… – Yes, I added salt and pepper. – All he said was delicious. I mastered it, yeah.
I feel so great. Want some? – I actually learned how to
make cream of mushroom soup. I love making soups
and stocks anyway. – Guess you can’t have
too much mushrooms in mushroom soup. – We’re looking for the soup
coats the back of the spoon. When you run it through,
you get a nice consistency. – Yeah?
– Yeah. – [Man] We have herb sauce here. – [Narrator] After the
fundamentals and soups, next comes sauces. – I used to make a lot
of gravies at home. I told my family, “I
don’t do gravy no more. “I do sauces now. “What kind of sauce you want? “You want a cream sauce? “You want a bechamel sauce? “You want a mother sauce, a
brown sauce, a Bordelaise?” I just love doing the sauces. – It’s a work in
progress for them to learn how to
make hollandaise. I don’t expect
perfection right away. That being said, you
did a very good job. On the hollandaise, you like
a nice bright color, pourable. This one’s pretty good. Nice and pourable,
nice and bright. – A little eggy, it means it
needs to be cooked longer. The seasoning is fine. You just need to cook the
egg yolk a little longer. – This is the brown sauce. Everybody had to do one. You get graded from
four, three, two, to one. And I got two fours
and two threes so boo-yah, bam bam! – [Narrator] Working
in close quarters also teaches the students
valuable lessons. – See, I was already ready. See there. – I have learned so much
from the other students here. It doesn’t matter if they’re
18 and fresh out of high school or if they’re older than me. It’s been a little bit of
a shell shock sometimes talking to people
and feeling my age, but for the most part, it’s
been really, really cool getting to know so many
people from so many backgrounds and ages. – That was too early. – Yeah, I didn’t
have it pushed down. – You have to fold
it like on top. – Yeah, I can’t either
so, but you gotta do what works best for us. – Everybody learns their
skills and learns them well before the entire team moves on. – Okay, now a teeny
bit, just loosen it up. It’ll help that roux
toast a little bit better. There we go. – With Chef Moran, you’re
rewarded for working together. – Add your spices first. There you go. Beautiful, stir those in good. And now, wait ’til he
gets those stirred in and then you can add the stock. (light instrumental music) – [Narrator] The next
set of cooking skills student chefs need to
master are with vegetables. – I love vegetables. I love starches,
and I love grains. I like my meat, but your flavor, the interest, the things
that make the plate shine are usually going to be those
things that go beside it. – Students need to
understand that maybe the protein should be
a little bit smaller and the vegetables should
be an important component. Vegetables can stand out. ‘Cause that butter or oil
that you’re going to use is gonna give your
vegetable a little shine. Your vegetables
should be arranged. Try it. It’s tender, but it’s not mushy. You’re ready to go. The vegetable is
gonna retain its value and taste better if
it’s prepared right before it’s needed or
right before the plate is required to have the
protein put on it and a sauce. – Check your peas. The only way you’ll know
they’re done is by tasting them. – Okay. – I have yours over there,
with the brown mustard. I just wanted to… – Yours are still hard. – That’s no good. – [Chef] We’re looking like
for a light stew consistency, not soupy, but a
little bit of a stew. – Bam, a little salt. Bam, bam! There you go, Hoppin’
John, Phil style. Hey! – [Student] Mashed potatoes. – [Chef Moran] Then
we’ll move into potatoes and do starches, different
types of varieties of potatoes, and applying
different techniques. So whether it’s mashed or
double baked or pureed, all these different techniques. – [Narrator] Mashed
potatoes are transformed into fancy duchess potatoes. – It gives it a nice texture
by doing the star tip. So you go around in a circle. One, two, and up. – Whoa, hello. Why is this… – [Narrator] It takes practice
to master this technique. – Bam, Phil! Look. – Your seasoning’s right
where it should be. – Ah-ha, yes! I did it again! We did it again, Matt. Oh, there you go. – I just love learning. I love anything that
has to do with food. I think it’s just
very interesting what you can do with food. – When I first started,
I knew nothing, but it was just fun
getting your hands dirty, trying new things. But now that you know
the basics of it, it’s pretty interesting. (light instrumental music) – You’re going to go
down on the other side, and you’ll feel the
bones along that. – [Narrator] After
vegetables, students learn to handle meat in a
process called fabrication. – That’s right. Now once you get past that
bone, then you go straight down. Fabrication basically goes
down to taking the raw product that we need to show them
where the structure is, how do they understand
where the natural joints are and where they are
gonna make the cuts, or how do they bone them out. – [Student] When you cut a
chicken up, you got bones. And you want to cut at the bone. When you cut, it
should just come apart. See how easy that came apart. You don’t want to cut the bone. – [Chef Moran] They have
to work the proper knife. You can’t just take any knife and start cutting up
meats and proteins. – [Narrator] Students
use boning knives. – [Chef] You can almost
go straight down. That’s right. – [Narrator] A scimitar. – [Chef] Keep it nice and
tight against that bone. – [Narrator] Or even a
hand saw for fabrication. – [Chef] It doesn’t
take too long. Once you get the saw
trimmed on the bottom, you’re gonna have
to stop at a point and evaluate where
your saw is going. – When we are fabricating
the chicken or the fish, we would just handle with care. “Maureen, you got to
handle it with care. “Maureen, like this,
handle it like this. “Don’t rough on it.” So it’s really, he
really makes sure things are really done
the way it’s done right. – Smooth, long line, then the meat doesn’t have that. Okay, pick it up. Let’s see how you did. Set it down. Set it down; don’t drop it down. Beautiful, five ounces,
congratulations. (clapping and cheering) – [Narrator] MATC
alumnus Zach Espinosa has perfected the
art of fabrication as the executive chef at Mr.
B’s – a Bartolotta Steakhouse. – So what I have here is a
whole New York strip loin, and we’re gonna fabricate
this into steaks. – Zach had a certain passion,
and he wanted to learn. He’s really worked a
lot of areas for us. I think Zach has an inherent
ability to teach people and spend time nurturing them. – So what are we
looking for, Bailey, when we’re making bearnaise? What do we want the
egg yolks to do? – We want them to
thicken up a little bit. – That’s right. We’re looking for ribbons. It’s that skill of being
able to interact with people whether it’s your
staff or your guests. But it’s also just knowing
the impact you could make with the smallest
little conversation. So it’s really, really fun part. – [Man] Gonna get busy up here? – Yeah, it’s about to. It’s just what I love. It’s really the best
part about my job, making people smile. A little bit more intense,
a little bit more pressure and stress, no doubt about it, but it’s fun. It’s cool, you know? – [Narrator] After
learning fabrication, students begin to handle
and cook with fish. – So we want a nice
clean looking fillet. – I learned the right
way to fillet a fish. I always went fishing with
my dad when we were little, but I never liked gutting
them and all that. Filleting seemed is so
hard and so amazing to me, and I can fillet a
pretty good fish now. When you do six or seven
of them in a row… – [Chef Moran] Follow
those ribs, that’s right. – Fish is very delicate
so you have to do it like almost, not perfect,
but you want to do it to where the fish
still looks nice. ‘Cause you can really mess
up the fish really bad. – Very nice. See how the larger fish, you
get a bigger yield from that. Look at how beautiful
that fillet is. – I think a mastery of
seafood is a difficult thing. – When we’re learning all
about the seafoods and fish, I’ll be more interested in
eating different kinds of fish. – I’ve never made calamari,
but I have it all the time. So now that I know
how to make this, it’s a done story for all
types of dinner parties. – I will not be
working with this. I promise to Jesus I will
not be working with this. This is… This is just too much. – If your oil is hot, it’ll fry in between
30 and 40 seconds. You take it and you get it
to the corner like this. And then you pour it in. You’ve got Parmesan and salt. Sprinkle up here so it
gets sprinkled around. There you go. Good. Plenty. – [Student] You wanna
do the Parmesan? – This is Squidward. – [Chef Moran]
Never had it before? – Tastes like shrimp. – [Chef Moran] Yeah,
a little bit. Yeah. – I think the best
part of all this is like noticing something that you probably wouldn’t cook at home or notice something
that you probably have had at a restaurant. And then you cook it here, it’s just like mind blowing. – [Narrator] Great
tasting food also needs to be presented
in a pleasing way. – The customer wants
to see the food. Don’t be masking this and
dumping lots of sauce over it. – People don’t realize
it’s not just about cooking the food. It’s about presenting
it to the customers. And Center of the Plate
is a really cool class that focuses on how to do that. – [Chef] Now when you do serve, keep it off the
edge of the plate. – Basically it’s showing you
how to portion a protein, a vegetable, and a carbohydrate. You have to learn how to
have the right portions of food for the customer. You have to cook the meat
correctly with a sauce. You have to pick a
color of a vegetable and then your starch. So it’s mainly
about presentation. And your food has to be spot on. – [Chef Jung] I want to
see that they can turn out a properly apportioned
plate of food to order. – [Narrator] Chef Kyle Jung
works with his students on their plating
and presentation. – People taste with
their eyes first. If the food doesn’t
look attractive, you’re going in
with preconceptions. – And is the flavor
too big or too little? And applying where
is the right level? Where is the sweet spot? – Your seasoning is spot on so all you need to do
is remember to turn them and make sure you get
that browning, okay? Salt and pepper, whoo. Whoo. It’s all these fun things
that they get to apply all the techniques, and they
get to show off a little bit. – Yes! – [Student] We’re taking the
vegetables that we learned how to cook earlier
in the semester and the meats that we
learned how to fabricate, and we’re bringing them
together into complete meals. We’re building beautiful
plates of food together. We’re learning how different
foods work well together, how to complement
them with the way that they sit on the plate. – [Chef Moran] And we’ve
got that nice, rich butter going over the trout. That’s gonna help to
continue to cook it too. – The Center of the
Plate really helped me, and I was looking
forward to this class because I knew I
didn’t plate right. – This looks like a lovely
job on the hollandaise. Actually, splendid job. And it’s not just appearance. It’s sound; it’s smell. It’s everything. The entire experience. When that plate
comes to the table, it should wow a customer. And you’re on performance
every night, every plate. – The circle ones
are the duck too, with the bacon around the edges. – [Chef] People will
beat a path to your door for something they’ve
never had before and can’t wait to have again, a great soup or a
fantastic salad. – [Narrator] In a class
called Garde Manger, French for “Keeper of the Food”, Chef James Udulutch
teaches students the art of creating cold foods. – Twist. Texture, taste, knife cuts, the way you cut your
vegetables for a salad, the small garnish
you put on a canape that’s going to go
out to a customer, all those things,
all the really small minuscule detail work becomes
emphasized in this class. Four layers of phyllo
for an appetizer and six for an entree. This used to be our signature
vegetarian entree at La Toile. – Garde Manger was
a really cool way to learn how to take
something that seems silly like a salad and elevate
it into something that’s beautiful. – You can sprinkle… Yeah, let’s sprinkle maybe
more lavender over here. – Presentation, quality,
execution, speed, and flavor are all the things
that come into my class and are really,
really nailed on. And we have a lot of
opportunity for creativity. – That class is
my favorite class because it talked about
the party hors d’oeuvres. Teach you how to do the
passed hors d’oeuvres, the little bitty
cold appetizers. So I thought that was awesome. – [Narrator] Students
learn sausages, categorized as cold foods
because they’re preserved meats. – All sausages are
actually an emulsion in that the texture
and the final flavor is highly effected
by whether or not the product is
emulsified properly where most people
don’t even realize that their brats and their
Italians sausages are all an emulsion. So we expect them to
understand not only the seasoning and
the flavoring in this but also how to cook them,
grill them appropriately, as well as the entire
stuffing procedure. – Whoa! You gotta release. – [Student] We’ve got a leak. – [Chef] More than
a leak, my friend. That’s an avalanche. To be able to put your
own personal touch on something like this
is what’s going to set these students apart
out in the industry. – Yeah, we’re working
on appetizers, the pattypan with stuffed
mushroom and sausage and rice. And then it’s going to
be herb salad and salmon. – [Student] Seeing
the smoked salmon, it was smoked in sugar,
dill, sea salt, and herbs. – Terrines and forced meats, essentially old
preservation methods for different meat products. You’ve got Asian duck,
liver pate, chicken liver, duck and ham, ham and cherry, and a dozen other varieties. – One of the main things
we teach in this class is utilization of product, and almost all of
our techniques, the sausages, the smoking,
the pates and terrines, many of the
preservation techniques, gravlox, confit, they’re
all based on preservation. – Very simple things that just
takes a little bit of time, and it tastes so much better. And you feel so much
better not eating all those preservatives
and everything. – If you are creating
something from your brain and your hand and
your name is on it, you’re gonna take more time
to make sure it’s perfect. – I’ve always been down
to try new things, so… I was actually
excited to make it, but if I don’t like it, I know that there are
people out there who will pay a lot of money for this so I don’t mind making it and taking my time to actually
produce it for people. – If you love doing hors
d’oeuvres and canapes and salads and things like that, that’s an awesome
class to be in. – I’m looking for the
proper techniques. I’m looking for them to
execute the basics effectively. Put your finger in that joint. (pops tongue) Okay, I’ll do my own
sound effects, thanks. All right. – He has a great sense of humor so he’ll keep you laughing. He’ll keep you going, but
then he has a serious side. It’s like, “I’ll play with you, “but you better have
your work done.” – Good, much better. – He really understands
things in a way, and he runs his
classroom a lot like a chef would run a restaurant. – [Narrator] Karen
Bell owns and operates Bavette La Boucherie, a
contemporary butcher shop and cafe that uses time-honored
culinary traditions. – I enjoy cooking,
and cooked at home and for roommates in college. And so I decided to try
culinary school, MATC, and the first day
I fell in love. And I knew that this
is what I would do. My favorite classes were
obviously more of the labs, the hands-on cooking classes. I mean, that was just
like the coolest thing. Like this is what
I’m doing for school? It’s just so cool;
this is my life. – [Narrator] A finalist
for the James Beard Award, the country’s highest honor
for excellence in cuisine, Chef Bell values
her MATC training. – I think it’s important
to get both the practical school
learning and base and then also the experience because you really learn from
both and in different ways. Creativity is something
that a lot of people have, but it’s also something
you have to work at and work on. And that was something I
never would have guessed I’d be in this creative
position that I’m in now. – Now, I can really
start seeing my skills kind of apply in my job and
at home when I’m cooking, that kind of stuff. It’s just really cool. – Absolutely learned
so much to the point where what I feel
like I know already doesn’t even surpass what I’ve
already learned in school. – Flavoring, seasoning,
adding, plating, it’s been a good thing. Really enjoyed
this hands on now. We’ve got the information
and the knowledge and we’re steady learning
the hands on techniques. Getting in there,
getting it done. – I appreciate all your efforts because you guys
listened to what I asked. You used colors;
you used knife cuts, and that’s all I asked. It’s about what we learned
throughout the year. – Coming up on Cook.Plate.Dine., the students get to share
their culinary creations with the public. – Today I tried the Tuscan
chicken on the ciabatta bread, and it was delicious. – [Narrator] From comfort food. – Whats’ the difference
between New York style and Chicago style pizza? – It’s 80 pounds of
chicken wings there. – Remember, you have to make
20 gallons of chili this week. – [Narrator] To
international cuisine. – All right, we’re gonna
put two chili peppers in. The kung pao has
to be very spicy. – [Narrator] To the
details of fine dining. – You’ve got the napkin. And how many inches
should be between the fork and the knife? 12. – [Narrator] How will
paying customers react? – Here we go, y’all. – [Narrator] Join us next
time for another taste of Cook.Plate.Dine. We’d love to hear from
you about this episode of Cook.Plate.Dine. Call us at 414-797-3760
with your feedback. Discover more about
Cook.Plate.Dine online at MilwaukeePBS.org. And follow us on the
Milwaukee PBS Facebook page. – So that’s something that
I find really valuable. (light instrumental music) – Fast, fast, fast,
every day something new. – I love a challenge,
and this is a challenge. (lively instrumental music) – A little less
time cooking them. – Please don’t mess it up. – [Student] Oh, I
messed up the first egg.

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